Wolverines upset top-seeded Bethel in BRC tournament opener

Published 8:00 am Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Prior to the third set of Wednesday’s Blue Ridge Conference first-round volleyball tournament game at Bethel Middle, Polk Middle head coach Matthew Russell talked to his team about the importance of starting the set on a strong note.

Adair Edwards apparently paid close attention.

Edwards served 14 straight points to open the set, paving the way for Polk County Middle to claim a 2-1 victory over the top-seeded Demons.

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The Wolverines (8-5) advanced to Monday’s semifinal, where they traveled to Brevard Middle for a clash with their East Division rival. All four semifinalists in the tourney are from the East Division, a testament to its strength this season. Bethel Middle ended its year with an 11-2 record.

Polk County notched a 16-25, 25-11, 25-15 win to claim the upset win over the West Division champs.

“The girls knew this was a ‘win or go home’ situation and we’ve got a big group of eighth grade girls that aren’t ready to be done with volleyball,” Russell said.

After dropping the first set, Polk Middle grabbed a 5-1 lead in the second, leading to a Bethel timeout. The Wolverines pushed the lead to 10-2, and Amberlyn Scruggs helped close out the second with eight straight service points, including five aces, to even the match at 1-1.

Polk then raced to its big third-set lead and moved on to the semifinals.

“We aren’t taking anything for granted and we know going to Brevard and winning in the semis will be tough,” Russell said. “We split with them during the regular season, so this playoff matchup should be a great challenge and a lot of fun.”

– Submitted by PolkSports.com